Prep Impressions: Nov. 3, 2016
The Mustangs, playing at home against a team it hadn’t defeated in its last five tries, needed the win to claim the Big VIII’s second spot. On the other sideline, Norco, winners of seven-of-nine in the series and consistently the Big VIII’s No. 2 team.
That is, before the Mustangs rallied late for a 52-51 victory on Thursday, Nov. 3, 2016.
“This is great. We haven’t felt like this in a long time,” Roosevelt junior QB Jeremy Moussa said afterward.
Roosevelt (8-2 overall, 4-1 Big VIII) led 35-21 at halftime but had to jumpstart its offense in the fourth quarter, and just in time as Moussa hit Braedin Huffman-Dixon in the end zone for the go-ahead touchdown with 1 minute, 57 seconds remaining.
“We called a back-shoulder fade and he made a great catch,” Moussa said. “It looked like it was pinned against the defender’s body. It was a great play.”
Norco (6-4, 3-2) fought back to lead, 42-38, in second half on the magnificent play of senior RB Travis Dye, but couldn’t hold Moussa and the Mustangs’ offense when it mattered.
Moussa marched Roosevelt down the field time and again, shredding Norco’s defensive backs for five TDs and more than 400 passing yards. He went downfield for touchdowns of 28, 11, 36, 60 and 8 yards.
“I missed a few throws here and there, but our run game was great all night,” Moussa said.
What’s more, senior RB Christopher Newman had the game of his career, gaining 204 yards and scoring twice on 24 carries. The Mustangs offensive line should get some credit for that, too.
There’s just enough naivety in Roosevelt to make them dangerous. Tommy Leach is in his first year with the Mustangs, as are several on the coaching staff, and Moussa’s still raw enough to not know any better.
“This is the first time for everybody so it’s really nice,” Moussa said.
Is Roosevelt about to turn this run into something more in the CIF-Southern Section Division 5 playoffs? We wouldn’t be surprised.